App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Kik App Poster Image
Social networker connects with strangers, bots, websites.

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 57 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 89 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kik Messenger wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning.

Ease of Play

App is simple enough, but can only be used among Kik users.


User-generated content is unmonitored and can contain references to and images of violence.


User-generated content is unmonitored and can contain sexual references and imagery.


User-generated content is unmonitored and can contain bad language.


App adoption (purchases) pushed through web/app search function. Kik Codes used to connect users to brands. No in-app purchases.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

User-generated content is unmonitored and can contain content related to drugs, alcohol, and smoking.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Kik is an app-based alternative to standard texting as well as a social networking app for smartphones. With features like video, sketch, bot search, and friend or group code scanning, the app can be used by kids as young as 13 but should really only be used by older teens and adults since it's so easy to connect with strangers. There are no in-app ads or purchases, but the Kik Code function encourages users to use the app to connect themselves to commercial brands. A built-in web search also points users to third-party sites. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the types of information gathered and shared. 

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byCyber Safety Lady June 6, 2014

A Dangerous App For Children And Teens

I've been following Kik Messenger for a while now and reporting on its lack of safety for kids. Kik Messenger is getting very popular with children under 1... Continue reading
Adult Written byDigitaldenny October 11, 2013

Kik is NOT Safe for Kids!

To get an overview of the app, look at the video posted by the Cyber Safety Lady on You Tube titled, "Why KiK Messenger is NOT Safe for Kids".
Teen, 13 years old Written byHeretohelp26 November 7, 2012

It's fine

It's a perfectly fine messaging app as long as you restrict you're children from oink text the app connected to Kik which randomly chooses Kik users f... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byGabs... April 6, 2018


I got it as my FIRST social media. I got it when I was in year 6 I think, so about 11, way too young. Anyway I have it for a month or two and I loved it and it... Continue reading

What's it about?

Registering for KIK requires using your first and last name and choosing a profile photo or creating a "bitmoji." You're prompted to search your phone contacts for other Kik users (you can decline, but then you'll have no one to message with; the app only works with other Kik users). A group search helps you find people with similar interests, and then you can join those groups or start your own. Once in a group, you can chat with members and send them photos, GIFs, videos, etc. A feature called "Kik Code" allows you to quickly friend people by scanning their codes with your phone's camera. The app provides a web search function that points users toward websites outside the app, and a Discover Bot feature lets them "socialize" and play games with online chat bots.

Is it any good?

In the plus column, there are no message limits, character limits, or fees, and you can send other users lots of content, but it's too easy for teens to connect with strangers. The search function helps you find like-minded Kik users and join their special interest (art, music, cosplay, etc.) groups. You can also start your own. However, Kik has no age verification and no teen safeguards, and it's too easy for kids to talk to strangers of all ages in public groups. The "Kik Code" feature makes for instant profile swap with other users and is used to connect you with commercial products. A "discover more web pages" function sends users outside the app toward (presumably) partner sites, and a "discover bots" function sets you socializing with branded AI bots. All told, despite its fun features, it's a risky choice for teens.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about QR codes and how companies like Kik use them to gather information about you. What information do you share in your profile? Is it safe to share that information?

  • Discuss the potential risks associated with using an approved app to download other third-party apps. What are the apps for? What kind of information do they collect?

  • Think about how bots function within social media. Are the bots for social interaction or advertising? Both?

App details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love socializing and making friends

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